Flash Card

LAKSHYA-75 [Day-33] Current Flash Cards for IAS Prelims 2020

Naf River; JUS COGENS; Survival International; Women, Business and the Law (WBL) report 2020; National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP); Right to access internet; Article 19; Antarctic Treaty; Nature Risk Rising Report; Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in India; Wollemi Pine grove;
By IASToppers
April 10, 2020

Recently in news, the Wollemi Pine Grove is considered precious for which reason?

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  • Wollemi Pine grove is known to be of prehistoric existence whose ancestors have seen the dinosaurs. It is found in a secretive location of Sydney, Australia.

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Wollemi Pine grove

  • The Prehistoric Wollemi Pine grove, whose ancestors are thought to have stood tall among dinosaurs some 200 million years ago has been saved from Australian bushfires in a secret mission.
  • It exists in a secret location within the 5,000 square kilometre Wollemi National Park of Sydney.
  • The oldest fossil of the rare pine species dates back 90 million years and the pines are thought to have existed during the Jurassic period.
  • Wollemi National Park is the only place in the world where these trees are found in the wild and, with less than 200 left.
  • While some trees have been damaged, the species has survived.

Why their location was kept secret?

  • The pines, which prior to 1994 were thought to be extinct.
  • The location is kept secret to prevent contamination.

Which committee first recommended the formation of Primary Health Centres in India?

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  • Bhore Committee

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Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in India

  • Primary Health Centre(PHCs), sometimes referred to as public health centres are state-owned rural health care facilities in India.
  • They are essentially single-physician clinics usually with facilities for minor surgeries, too. They are part of the government-funded public health system in India and are the most basic units of this system.
  • Presently there are 28,863 PHCs in India.
  • This was first recommended in 1946 by the Bhore Committee.

The Naf river marks the border of which countries?

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  • River Naf marks the border of Bangladesh and Myanmar.

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Naf River

  • The Naf river is an international river marking the border of southeastern Bangladesh and western Myanmar.
  • It flows into the Bay of Bengal.
  • It flows between the Bangladeshi Cox’s Bazar District of the Chittagong Division and the Burmese Rakhine State.

Recently, the Nature Risk Rising Report is published by which organization/fund?

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  • Recently, the Nature Risk Rising Report is published by World Economic Forum.

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Nature Risk Rising Report

  • This report is released by World Economic Forum.
  • The report said that about 25 per cent of our assessed plant and animal species are threatened by human actions, with a million species facing extinction, many within decades.
  • China, the EU and the UShave the highest absolute economic value in nature-dependent industries.
  • The report said damage to nature from economic activity can no longer be considered an ‘externality’.
  • The report said USD 44 trillion of economic value generation– over half the world’s total GDP – is moderately or highly dependent on nature and its services and, as a result, exposed to risks from nature loss.
  • Construction(USD 4 trillion), agriculture (USD 2.5 trillion) and food and beverages (USD 1.4 trillion) are the three largest industries that depend most on nature. Combined, their value is roughly twice the size of the German economy.

In terms of global exposure, larger economies have the highest absolute amounts of GDP in nature-dependent sectors: USD 2.7 trillion in China, USD 2.4 trillion

Is India a party to the treaty called ‘Antarctic Treaty’?

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  • India is a party to the treaty.

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Antarctic Treaty

  • The Antarctic Treatyand related agreements, collectively known as the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS).
  • It regulates international relations with respect to Antarctica.
  • The treaty sets aside Antarctica as a scientific preserve, establishes freedom of scientific investigation, and bans military activity on the continent.
  • Article 1 of the treaty says that Antarctica shall be used for peaceful purposes only but it does not prohibit the scientific research carried on by military personnel or equipment.
  • Article 2 states the freedom of scientific investigation in Antarctica and cooperation toward that end, as applied during the International Geophysical Year, shall continue, subject to the provisions of the present treaty.
  • The treaty entered into force in 1961.
  • It has currently 54 parties.
  • Secretariat:Buenos Aires, Argentina

The Antarctic Treaty System’s yearly Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meetings (ATCM) are the international forum for the administration and management of the region. Only 29 of the 54 parties to the agreements have the right to participate in decision-making at these meetings, though the other 25 are still allowed to attend

Legal system of Antarctica

  • Antarctica currently has no permanent population and therefore it has no citizenship nor government.
  • All personnel present on Antarctica at any time are citizens or nationals of some sovereignty outside Antarctica, as there is no Antarctic sovereignty.

Recently, the Supreme Court of India announced the right to access internet as a fundamental right under which article of the constitution?

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  • The Right to access internet is a fundamental right under freedom of speech and expression (Article 19).

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Article 19

Protection of certain rights regarding freedom of speech etc.

  1. All citizens shall have the right:
  • to freedom of speech and expression;
  • to assemble peaceably and without arms;
  • to form associations or unions;
  • to move freely throughout the territory of India;
  • to reside and settle in any part of the territory of India; and
  • omitted – by the 44thConstitutional Amendment Act
  • to practise any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business
  1. Nothing in sub clause (a) of clause (1) shall affect the operation of any existing law, or prevent the State from making any law, in so far as such law imposes reasonable restrictions on the exercise of the right conferred by the said sub clause in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency or morality or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence.

Supreme Court verdicts related to Article 19

  • The Supreme Court (SC) has said that Access to the internet is a fundamental right under Article 19of the constitution (in the wake for Internet shutdown in the Jammu & Kashmir after abrogation of Article 370).

Recently, a Task force was constituted to draw up the National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP)’. What is the objective of NIP?

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The objective of the NIP is to enable the government to invest Rs.100 crores in Infrastructure of the country in efficient way.

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National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP)

  • The Indian government will invest Rs. 100 lakh crore on infrastructure in the next five years.
  • To achieve this objective, a Task Force was constituted to draw up the National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP)for each of the years from FY 2019-20 to FY 2024-25 with the approval of the Finance Minister.
  • The Task Force is chaired by Secretary, DEAwith CEO (NITI Aayog), Secretary (Expenditure), Secretary of the Administrative Ministries, and Additional Secretary (Investments), DEA as members and Joint Secretary (IPF), DEA as Member Secretary.
  • The first meeting of the Task Force was held in September 2019. Subsequently, several meetings were held with various Departments/Ministries engaged in infrastructure development, Corporates engaged in infrastructure development & construction, Banks/Financial Institutions, Private Equity funds, and Industry Associations, including CII, FICCI & ASSOCHAM, to seek information as well as suggestions on reforms required in infrastructure sectors.
  • This exercise, the first of its kind, is expected to be followed up by a periodical review process.
  • NIP will enable a forward outlook on infrastructure projectswhich will create jobs, improve ease of living, and provide equitable access to infrastructure for all, thereby making growth more inclusive.
  • NIP includes economic and social infrastructure projects.
  • On the basis of the information compiled as on date, total project capital expenditure in infrastructure sectors in India during the fiscals 2020 to 2025 is projected at over Rs 102 lakh crore.
  • During the fiscals 2020 to 2025, sectors such as Energy (24%), Roads (19%), Urban (16%), and Railways (13%) amount to around 70%of the projected capital expenditure in infrastructure in India.
  • Out of the total expected capital expenditure of Rs. 102 lakh crore, projects worth Rs 42.7 lakh crore (42%) are under implementation, projects worth Rs 32.7 lakh crore (32%) are in conceptualization stage and rest are under development.
  • It is expected that projects of certain states, who are yet to communicate their pipelines, would be added to the pipeline in due course.
  • The Task Force in its detailed report has given recommendations on changes required to several key sectoral policies and other reform initiativesto be initiated by Central and State Governments.

‘Women, Business and the Law (WBL) report 2020’ was released by which international organization?

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  • Women, Business and the Law (WBL) report is a biennial report released by theWorld bank.

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Women, Business and the Law (WBL) report 2020:

  • WBL measures how laws and regulations affect women’s economic opportunity in 190 economies.
  • The 2020 edition covers reforms conducted during a 2-year period ending in September 2019.
  • The index analyses economic rights during different phases in a woman’s working life through eight indicators ranging from:
    • being able to move freely to rights in the workplace, when women get married and have children, how the law prevents or allows them to run their own businesses and manage assets all the way to retirement.

India’s performance:

  • India is placed 117thamong 190 countries on the index.
  • India, the world’s most populous democracy scored 74.4 on a par with Benin and Gambia and way below least developed countries like Rwanda and Lesotho.

Global Highlights:

  • The global average score in 2019 is 75.2, up from 73.9 in 2017 but the overall pace of reform has been slow.
  • Eight countries this year achieved a perfect score – Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Latvia, Luxembourg, and Sweden.
  • No economy in ‘East Asia and the Pacific’, ‘Europe and Central Asia’, or ‘Latin America and the Caribbean’ were among top reformers.

Survival International, as seen in news frequently, is an NGO related to which cause?

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Survival International is an NGO that campaigns for the rights of indigenous and/or tribal peoples and uncontacted people.

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Survival International

  • Survival International is a human rights organisationthat campaigns for the rights of indigenous and/or tribal people and uncontacted people.
  • The organisation’s campaigns generally focus on tribal peoples’ desires to keep their ancestral lands.


  • To prevent the annihilation of tribal peopleand to give them a platform to speak to the world so they can bear witness to the genocidal violence, slavery and racism they face on a daily basis.
  • To defend the lives, lands and futures of people who should have the same rights as other contemporary societies.


  • A world where tribal peoples are respected as contemporary societies and their human rights protected.

Founded: 1969

Headquarters: London, United Kingdom

A term ‘JUS COGENS’ was recently appeared in news. What does it mean?

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  • JUS COGENS or jus cogens, means “compelling law” in Latin, are peremptory or authoritative rules in international lawfrom which the states cannot deviate.

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  • These norms cannot be offset by a separate treatybetween parties intending to do so, since they hold fundamental values.
  • The principle of jus cogens dates back to Roman timesand is accepted by most states and international organisations.
  • The jus cogens rules have been sanctioned by the Vienna Conventionson the Law of Treaties of 1969 and 1986.
  • According to both Conventions, a treaty is void if it breaches jus cogens rules.
  • These norms cannot be offset by a separate treatybetween parties intending to do so, since they hold fundamental values.

What is included in jus cogens?

  • An exhaustive list of jus cogens rules does not exist so far.
  • However, the prohibition of slavery, genocide, racial discrimination, prohibition against apartheid, torture, and the right to self-determination are recognised norms.

Daily Current Flash Cards 2020 Prelims 2020 LAKSHYA-75

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